How’s that again?
I don’t understand this. I must (as so often) be missing something. Roger Scruton says we we owe to ‘the Christian legacy’ the idea that law is and ought to be a secular institution, then he says we owe it to Roman law, but he goes on saying it’s a Christian legacy.
[O]ne of the things that we owe to [the Christian] legacy is the idea that law is and ought to be a secular institution, whose authority is founded in human decisions and is independent of, and in an important respect takes precedence over, divine commands…The privatisation of religious law was clearly a part of Jesus’s mission…His striking pronouncement in the story of the tribute money, that we should render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and unto God what is God’s, has served for many centuries as authority for the view that, in public matters, it is human and not divine government that should be obeyed. This idea gained credibility through St Paul’s letters, influenced as they were by Roman law and by the knowledge that the early church enjoyed the protection of a developed system of law.
In other words there was an existing system of secular law which influenced Paul, and one catchy phrase is attributed to Jesus – and that makes secular law a Christian legacy? It looks to me much more like a Roman legacy (and an Athenian legacy before that). What am I missing?